Islamist militants rammed an explosive-laden truck into a police station in an attack claimed by a Pakistani Taliban group.
At least 23 security officials were killed and several others were injured in a suicide bomb and gun attack on a police station in northwest Pakistan.
A suicide bomber detonated his explosive-laden vehicle in an early-morning attack on a police station in in Dera Ismail Khan, a city in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan.
Militants opened fire and there was a shootout with the security forces, police officer Kamal Khan said.
Several people were wounded and in critical condition, said Aizaz Mehmood, an official of the state-run rescue service.
Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar condemned the attack and said "Such cowardly actions cannot diminish the morale of the security forces."
Tahreek-e-Jihad Pakistan claims responsibility
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province is a former stronghold of the militant Pakistani Taliban group, also known as Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, or TTP. The newly formed militant group Tehreek-e-Jihad Pakistan, or TJP, believed to be an offshoot of the TTP, claimed responsibility for the attack.
Security forces, including the Pakistani military, from across the country were conducting intelligence-based operations against militants in the area and were based at the police station.
Pakistan has witnessed a dramatic spike in militant attacks, mainly in its border regions with Afghanistan, since the Taliban returned to power there in 2021.
In January, nearly 101 people had died in a suicide bomb attack on a mosque in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.